Producers get firsthand lesson in doing lunch

Guests attend EFP meet-and-greet

CANNES -- This year's intake of Producers on the Move came to a momentary halt Monday for a convivial beachside luncheon put on by the network's European backers.

A couple hundred guests showed up to meet and greet the 23 rising stars in the European production firmament, selected from the European Film Promotion's 31 member organizations spread across the continent.

The 23 have been discussing content, planning and financing for their respective European-based film projects. Previous years have seen up to 50% of the participants planning co-productions together, organizers said.

"I think this is one of the most successful initiatives by the European Film promotion," said Eva Vezer, president of the EFP, which is a network of organizations promoting and marketing European cinema worldwide.

After a roll call in which each producer was presented to the assembled company, guests tucked into a copious buffet of shrimp, salmon, prosciutto and pates followed by creamy chicken curry or fish -- all accompanied by some fine local wines.

Olaf Sturhk of POM financial partner Commerzbank said his company was keen to talk film financing with the assembled producers. "We're looking forward to networking with you," he said.

Financially backed by the European Union's MEDIA Program, POM has been running for 11 years.